Over the past couple years, a group of bloggers participated in an annual stock picking competition with which we have been a part of.  For 2010, we picked: Hanwei Energy (HE.TO), Manulife Financial (MFC.TO), Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO), and QLT Inc (QLT.TO).  Here are the results:

My Top 4 Stock Picks for 2010

Hanwei Energy (HE.TO) – This Chinese company provides products and services for the oil pipeline transportation, wind and coal energy industries.  Even though they have been oversold, they maintain a strong balance sheet.  They currently trade at less than half their book value, carry no long term debt, and have $0.28/share cash on their balance sheets.  Trading price as of Dec 31, 2009: $0.82.

As a penny stock, this one was expected to have a lot of volatility.  Unfortunately, it has moved severely to the downside and has remained down for 2010.   As of Dec 31, 2010, this stock trades at $0.45 which represents a 45.1% loss thus far (ouch!).  Disclaimer:  I own a small position in HE.

Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) – Most of you have probably heard of Manulife Financial as they are the largest insurance company in Canada (in terms of market cap).  I believe that Manulife has been oversold but hopefully return to strength in 2010. Trading price as of Dec 31, 2009: $19.33.

MFC is another stock that has been very disappointing but bounced back a bit by the end of the year.  As of Dec 31, MFC closed at $17.15 with $0.52 in dividends.  This represents a 8.6% loss including dividend.  Disclaimer:  I own shares of MFC held in my SM portfolio.

Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) – I picked Cenovus as my oil play.  Never heard of them?  Neither did I until I looked up the constituents of the energy index.  Encana recently split into two companies; ECA is now a natural gas company while all the oil and gas assets have gone to CVE. Trading price as of Dec 31, 2009: $26.50.

CVE was my pure energy play of the group and seemed like a logical pick as an ECA spinoff.  As of Dec 31, CVE closed at $33.28 with a $0.80 dividend representing a 28.6% gain including dividend.

QLT Inc (QLT.TO) – This is a riskier play of the batch as I picked them solely on their financial statements.  QLT is a pharmaceutical company that creates and commercializes eye treatments.  They trade below their book value, have no long term debt, and carry $3.81/share in cash on their balance sheet.  Trading price as of Dec 31, 2009: $5.23

This was my riskiest play, but also turned out to be the most rewarding!  As of Dec 31, QLT closed at $7.33 representing a 40.2% gain.

With the overall market trend moving upward for the last quarter really boosted the stock picks.  So much so that the portfolio closed in the black with an overall gain of 3.8% which is a big difference from quarters before.

Here are some other results from other bloggers:

Rank Site YTD Return (%)
1 The Wild Investor 27.15
2 Where Does All My Money Go 26.56
3 Dividend Growth Investor 26.08
4 Zack Stocks 20.87
5 My Traders Journal 10.39
6 Million Dollar Journey 3.79
7 Intelligent Speculator -0.45
8 The Financial Blogger -1.64
9 Money Smarts -35.25

Picks for 2011 are coming up!


  1. Steve Zussino on January 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    How do I get involved in the challenge for 2011?

    Can I create my own picks?


  2. twentysomethingmoney on January 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    I held Hanwei Energy for about 9 months, before I sold. In that time, I lost about 50% of the value — I ate the loss, and moved on to by something else. Looking at what its worth today, I think I made the right decision.

  3. Jaymus (RealizedReturns) on January 2, 2011 at 6:54 pm

    I’ll be posting my picks for 2011 tomorrow morning on my blog. Further, I will be providing more detailed articles on each of my picks over the next couple of weeks.

    My picks are:
    (1) Denison Mines (DML)
    (2) Lululemon (LLL)
    (3) BMO Financial (BMO)
    (4) Shore Gold (SGF)

    BMO is such a “boring” pick, but it’s sort of the rock of the 4 while the rest will likely experience more volatility.

  4. Nolan Matthias on January 3, 2011 at 3:01 am

    Last year I asked to get involved, but my request when unnoticed by all of the participants. I picked none the less, Ford, American Express, Starbucks, and Gold.

    Total return 35.61%

    Since I beat the group for 2010, care to count me in for 2011?

  5. ITS on January 3, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    Oh wow, it must really suck to under-perform the S&P/TSX Composite Index by 10.66%, MDJ!

  6. Jungle on January 3, 2011 at 11:05 pm

    Goes to show, not everyone can beat the benchmark index all the time. Also different when using real money. Seems that to beat the benchmark, you need to take more risk. Odds could go either way.

  7. Blair on January 4, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    So the S&P/TSX outperformed 5 bloggers, and fell short of 4 bloggers…

    That pretty much says all you need to know… Monkey, meet Dartboard.

  8. Blair on January 4, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    I lied, the aggragate of the “Bloggers” posted a Return of 8.6% (versus 14.45%S&P/TSX) . (assuming ITS numbers are correct).

    So it turns out the Monkey + Dartboard is a smarter play.


    P.S. If you remove the -35.25 Blogger, the Monkey STILL wins.

  9. Jungle on January 4, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    My stock pick to beat half the bloggers next year is XIC lol

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